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When you need medical help over the holidays

It might be a chicken BBQ gone wrong, a broken ankle at the beach, a nasty cut or something even more serious like the symptoms of a heart attack or a stroke

People need to know what to do and where to go, even if they are on holiday – or if their local doctor is.

Waikato DHB has some clear guidelines on Christmas/New Year medical services in the Waikato.

But it urges people to avoid some of the common problems that clog up after hours medical centres and emergency departments unnecessarily.

  • Make sure your prescriptions are up-to-date and that you have plenty of medications to get you through the holiday period.
  • Remember to pack your medications and a basic first aid kit when you are going away from home.
  • Use commonsense – including sunscreen, safe cooking practices, and keeping alcohol well separated from things like swimming and driving.

Look after yourself, your family and friends. Have fun and enjoy yourself.

If things do go wrong, don’t hesitate to seek help – and here is a guide on where you can find that advice and assistance:

You can also access this information on Waikato DHB’s website here

What to do if you need to access healthcare services during the holidays

In your usual location?

  • Phone your local GP practice or medical centre. If they are not open, they will have a recorded message or a transfer system that will put you in touch with after hours services.

On holiday away from home? 

  • Phone Healthline 0800 611 116 for advice from a trained health professional. Healthline can also give you the location of the nearest healthcare facility.

For emergencies and serious accidents, symptoms of heart attack, stroke or other serious conditions

  • Dial 111 for an ambulance, or go to your nearest hospital emergency department (at Waikato Hospital, Thames Hospital, Tokoroa Hospital, Te Kuiti Hospital and Taumarunui Hospital – location details).

For urgent medical attention e.g. cuts, burns, bad sprains or minor breaks, bad reaction to bites, sunstroke or serious sunburn, etc

  • Accident and Medical centres or your usual medical centre/GP practice if they are open.
  • In rural areas where there is not an Accident and Medical Centre available, go to the emergency department at the nearest public hospital.

Accident and Medical centres open 24/7 during the Christmas/New Year period

  • Anglesea Accident and Medical Centre, Gate 1, cnr Anglesea and Thackery Sts, Hamilton (open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week) – location map
  • Victoria Clinic, 750 Victoria St, Hamilton (open 7 days a week, 8am to 8pm) – website
  • In rural areas where there is not a 24/7 Accident and Medical Centre available, go to the emergency department at the nearest public hospital

For the locations and open hours of other medical centres and GP practices in the Waikato check out the PHO websites below.
(We recommend you ring the practice or medical centre to check they are open and make an appointment) :

Healthline – 0800 611 116

Healthline is a free telephone health advice service for all the family
Healthline’s registered nurses ask you questions about the symptoms, condition or illness you’re ringing about. From your answers, they’ll recommend the best thing to do.They can also tell you where to find your nearest GP after-hours service, hospital emergency department, pharmacy, or out-of-hours dental surgery.
Healthline can also provide general health information on a wide range of topics.


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